“What sort of opportunities are available for an undergraduate student to do research?” “Where are the most comfy couches on campus?” “If U of T published the most amazing and useful magazine in the world, what would be in it?” These are just a few of the questions that have been asked  and answered on the U of T subreddit, which describes itself as the place for “all things pertaining to social, academic, and cultural goings-on at the University of Toronto.”


Reddit is an online message board and community — a website where users can post links, comments, and questions. Within the main site, there are thousands of different categories, called subreddits. U of T has an extremely active subreddit, with over 3,000 subscribers. They share upcoming events on campus, discuss U of T related news, and of course, ask and answer questions about the university.

It is not only an online community, however. U of T also has an official Reddit club, the brainchild of student Tam Phan and two of her friends. Three years ago, Reddit held an online competition that pitted university subreddits against each other. That was how Phan discovered the U of T subreddit, and after attending a few unofficial meetups, she and her friends decided that they should write a constitution and make the meetups official with the University of Toronto Students’ Union. At the time, the subreddit did not have an active moderator, so the club’s executive stepped into that role as well.

Colin White, external communciations director for the club, emphasizes the social aspects of the club. “I think the stereotypical Redditor … sits inside and is on the internet all the time,” White admits. But in direct contrast to that stereotype, he explains that the club is meant to encourage members to “get out, do something fun, be sociable.” One of the club’s first major events, almost two years ago, was a trip to the Hart House farm, which they are hoping to replicate this spring. Recent events have also included trampoline dodgeball, a water balloon fight, and a terrible movie night — although their most popular events, according to White and Phan, are undoubtedly the bar meetups, which are scheduled roughly once a month. The next one is planned to coincide with Valentine’s Day.

Both the club and the subreddit attract a wide range of members, from all departments and all levels of study. “Lately I think we have a lot of undergraduates,” said Phan, and also observing that the subreddit is a popular place for senior high school students or incoming undergraduates to seek out wisdom about their new school. “They’re asking a lot of questions if they’re coming to U of T,” she says.

Though the primary demographic may be undergraduates, White notes that there are teaching assistants, professors, and university staff active on the subreddit as well. He recalls the time a new part-time professor asked for student input: “What should I do to be a great professor?” Staff members have also used the subreddit to recruit student opinions about potential designs for U of T’s official website.

The page is not only a place for news and for questions, it’s a place where current students and graduates of the university share their work:  apps they’ve designed, photographs they’ve taken, or research projects they’ve worked on. As a place for social interaction, news, culture, academics, and more, it’s become both a virtual hub of activity and a distinct community.

On the other hand, if you just want to know where the best places are to take naps on campus, you can find an answer for that, too!